The Development of an MIS for
Iron Ore Mining Operations

J. E. Everett
The University of Western Australia, Australia

T. Howard and M. Kamperman
BHP Iron Ore, Australia 

[email protected]

 

Abstract

We describe the development and implementation of a management informing system (MIS) to aid the mining, transporting, stockpiling and shipping of iron ore. Ore is railed from mines to a port, where it is blended on stockpiles and recovered to ships. The project commenced as a Decision Support System to aid quality control of ore grade. It evolved to become an MIS aiding operators, decision makers and managers at multiple stages and levels of the production process. The projectís history provides valuable lessons for the development of an MIS. The project was designed and implemented with clients rather than for clients, ownership by the users was emphasized, and domain knowledge was sought and incorporated at every stage. Contrary to textbook prescription, these considerations suggest that, rather than basing a project upon some initial grand plan, an incremental evolution is preferable, with developers and users cooperatively exploring possibilities as they unfold.

Keywords: MIS, DSS, Mining, Simulation, Excel.